Category Archives: Mad Men

September 20, 2011, 3:39 pm

Anything Can Happen To Any Bunny: A Review of “The Playboy Club”

I got out of the salt mines early today, and the first thing I did was read Historiann, who made a great catch on Nora Ephron’s response to the new Mad Men rip-off, The Playboy Club (stay tuned for Pan Am, premiering on ABC September 25.)

The second thing I did was microwave some lunch and settle down in front of the DVR to watch me some Bunnies.

The verdict?  It’s bad television, not because it celebrates sexism (which it does) but because it does so in a way that does not permit a transgressive identification, or perhaps any identification, with any character in the show.  Now, I would disagree with at least one of the points that Ephron makes about The Playboy Club: “Trust me, no one wanted to be a Bunny.”  No one wants to take comprehensive doctoral exams either, but that’s hardly the point.  Even though most committees don’t make you wear skin-tight sateen, spike heels and…

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August 1, 2010, 4:00 pm

The Moonlight And Magnolias School Of Women’s History: Katie Roiphe’s Take On Mad Men


Who needs another blogger bashing Katie Roiphe for not being a feminist? And why read more about what is often obvious nowadays: that if you have decent writing skills, have gone to an Ivy League school, and have a mother in the business you can get published even if your ideas are peculiar, uninformed and often just wrong? And why belabor the fact that, while feminists can’t get published nowadays, if you are willing to stand up and tell young women that feminism just doesn’t matter, you can make a tidy living?

If, despite my advice, you were a blogger who wrote such a piece, Katie Roiphe would just say you are part of the victim culture bred by 1970s feminism, and you are so deluded.
Which brings me to what I really want to write about Roiphe’s contribution to the New York Times “Sunday Styles” section today, The Allure of Messy Lives, in which she argues — through a superficial…

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April 2, 2010, 1:01 pm

Sunday (Am I Really) Radical Roundup: The Resurrection And The Life Edition

Continuing Concerns About My Politics Department: Click here for more concerns about whether I am really radical or not, discovered when I was Googling the Marc Bousquet reference cited in the previous post. It bears repeating occasionally that the Tenured Radical thing is meant to be understood in an ironic, oxymoronic, culture-warsy kind of context. But why waste an opportunity to talk about myself at length? Particularly on the Day that Our Lord rose from the dead, proved that there is hope for all of us, and encouraged the creation of the first, rudimentary group blog (currently also available as an iPhone App)?

It is my view that being a radical academic is a tricky, and perhaps impossible, proposition. Academics are inevitably hewing to one kind of convention or another, even when we are in resistance to — well, whatever. Hence, one is always stumbling over one’s own…

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